For those of you who follow Formula 1, you’d know that last weekend’s race at Spa in Belgium was pretty eventful. For the first time ever, Pastor Maldonado managed to complete a race without crashing into another driver or incurring a penalty. This is big news, considering that Pastor has finished just 4 out of the 11 races this season with 6 penalty points on his license after incurring 3 epic penalties in his previous race at Budapest.
All things considered, a little bit more “Situational Awareness” for Pastor might go a long way. He’s clearly a capable driver, but he needs to start paying more attention to what is going on around him so that his team Lotus can score points. Take for example the photo below, which illustrates the impact of not having Situational Awareness in F1. Simply put, it often ends in tears for all involved.
What does this have to do with IT operations? Well, the reality is that IT operations, like Pastor, suffer from a lack of Situational Awareness every day. And with so much going on in today’s application environments, it’s impossible for IT operations to be proactive and know exactly what’s taking place around them during any given time. Instead of cars crashing in this circumstance, however, applications and infrastructure crash, “killing” businesses daily.
The problem for IT Operations is that they have too many monitoring tools at their disposal. Each tool provides a silo’d view of the world, leading to tunnel vision (and a lack of Situational Awareness) by their operator. As a result, IT Operations fails to detect and respond to many severity-1 incidents due to the lack of correlation, context and basic collaboration across silo’d and teams.
For example, an application performance monitoring (APM) tool won’t tell you if a network switch or storage device has just failed, a log monitoring tool won’t tell you that your business transactions are running slow, and a network monitoring tool won’t indicate that your JVM memory is about to blow up. What IT Operations need now is Situational Awareness across their toolsets to know exactly what’s going on when the sh!t hits the fan, allowing them to see everything so they can detect and respond immediately.
On the other hand, while Pastor struggles with Situational Awareness, his pit crew has become masters at it. A modern F1 car, for example, has approximately 80,000 components and around 150 different monitors that all feed data to a central telemetry console, providing the pit crew with a single pane of glass and complete Situational Awareness. The crew is now able to monitor the performance, errors, anomalies, temperatures, pressures and reliability of all components ranging from the engine to the gearbox to the brakes. They know exactly what’s going during any given moment because they have a complete correlated view of the car. In addition, the pit crew is always proactive and collaborating with the driver to manage the car back home.
Just imagine if your IT Operations had this insight and capability…
Twenty years ago they implemented systems like IBM Tivoli Netcool, CA Spectrum, BMC BEM and HP NNM/OV. The problem with these legacy event managers, however, is that they don’t work with today’s modern application environments, – every dashboard they represent glows red and IT Operations has no idea what’s actually going on. This results in teams resorting back to the silo’d views of their monitoring toolsets.
The good news is that Moogsoft is fixing this problem, and is focused on providing Situational Awareness to enterprises and service providers who currently lack this operational insight and visibility. Our Incident.MOOG product has over 90 integrations with modern monitoring toolsets including AppDynamics, New Relic, Splunk, DynaTrace and Riverbed. As a result, customers like Yahoo, Deutsche Telekom and RBC are reaping the benefits of Situational Awareness across their applications, infrastructure and monitoring toolsets.
About the author Steve Burton